The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic continues to threaten educational opportunities in the Charlotte area, especially for low-income students and students of color. QC EdConnect, however, is providing Charlotte parents a platform to connect with learning resources to help their children’s education.
Wilbert Garcia ’21, a double major in computer science and PPE, spent his summer building the website. “I felt very strongly about creating a platform that connects students with educational resources,” he writes. “Schools provide a lot of resources to students from disadvantaged communities…QC EdConnect is working hard to make sure that these resources are visible and accessible to students and that barriers…are not getting in the way of that.”
The education startup “believes we each have a role to play to ensure that all children in Charlotte have access to an excellent education,” they write on their website. The website provides a map that indicates locations for food banks, clinics, academic support centers, childcare centers, and free WiFi stations.
Garcia, a native Spanish speaker, also provided translation support to increase the website’s accessibility.
“I [also] helped make considerations about the user experience, what specific stakeholders might need, and what designs would help access resources most efficiently,” Garcia adds. “I…was able to present them a completed product in under a week.”
“Advocacy is also an important part of what QC EdConnect wants to do,” Garcia notes. By clicking on the tab that reads “Get Involved,” access a call script and email template that guides you finding the contact information of local school board members and location of school board meetings, a comprehensive list of articles about education inequity, and links to petitions for equitable education options.
Visitors can explore options to volunteer or donate supplies to organizations in need. “Consider volunteering, donating, or reaching out to organizations on their site to see how you can help,” Garcia says. “Share the website link with any Mecklenburg-based families, students, or educators in your personal network.”
You can access the website at https://www.qcedconnect.com/.
Article written by Iain Anderson ’21